A letter from Iraq.
I really appreciate the box of treats that the people at DOTD sent to me. It meant a lot, knowing there were people who cared enough to do that. The time I spent at DOTD and the MANSCEN was rewarding, and I met a lot of good, dedicated people. I'm proud and thankful that I have been given the opportunity to deploy and do my job as a firefighter. It is a learning experience, and I hope to bring lessons back to use to implement change to our doctrine. My patents taught me that the best lessons learned are those that are learned through hardship. If that is true, this deployment should produce some good lessons learned.
Life here in Kuwait and Iraq is hot, sandy, and windy. It is sad to see the way these people have been forced to live. I know we did the right thing by freeing them. After driving by and seeing what these people have had to endure, it makes me angry when one of our own people complains. We have no reason to ever complain, and I'm proud to be here helping. Keep up the hard work that you do there at DOTD; it pays off on the battlefield, as I have now seen firsthand.
My fire-fighting unit, the 562d Engineer Detachment (Fire Truck) from Fort Leonard Wood, was on the Iraqi border next to the Paladins and Patriot systems the night the war began. At least three Scuds flew overhead as we ran to our bunkers. Also, a mortar round hit and destroyed a Kuwaiti police station about 1 to 2 kilometers from us. We wore various levels of MOPP gear for 2 months.
We are staying very busy and rarely have access to photos or mail. There are no modern facilities here. It's like living back before running water and electricity. But it's great to experience what it's like not having all the things we take for granted; it shows us a simpler way of life.
Those who really know me know that I could talk on forever, but I will cut it off now. Thanks again for the box of treats; I did share it with my soldiers. They are great guys, just as everyone is there at DOTD. Sorry for the sloppy handwriting; I don't have a table to steady the writing pad.
SFC William A. Brassfield